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Roy Janik

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biking: ride 2 [Apr. 16th, 2007|09:08 pm]
Roy Janik
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Biking is a lot of fun. But I'm still largely clueless. Kaci went off to get her picture taken for a new AIC ad campaign, leaving me alone at 8:30. So I popped in some triple A batteries into my bike's rear light, strapped on my gargantuan helmet, and hit the road. It was dark by this time.

My original plan was to do as I did yesterday and just drive around my immediate neighborhood. Once I got onto Sacramento, though, I found myself heading towards S. 1st. I went north on the sidewalk a ways, and then crossed the street. I took that cross street over to S. 5th, and then rode north again. I'd read earlier online that S. 5th was supposed to be an easy road to bike on. It was alright, but I found myself too scared of traffic. So I got back on the sidewalk when I could. I rode north to W. Live Oak, where I turned east. I passed the sound of peacocks, which I think live at Green Pastures. I went home all the way south on the S. 1st sidewalk, crossing when I dared.

All this while I fiddled with my gears. They're still a mystery to me. Most of the way home I was in 3 on the left and 7 on the right. But I have no idea what I should have been doing. I guess I need to experiment more. I'm a little worried that the bike is too tall for me. The manual says that I should have more clearance in my standover height than I actually do. But the bike feels great, so who knows.

My total ride time was only 20 minutes or so. But hell, it's been years and years since I've seriously ridden a bike.

On the way home I was chased half-heartedly by a tiny dog named Princess. She easily caught up to me.
LinkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: quaskye
2007-04-17 02:51 am (UTC)
Be careful riding on the sidewalk. Cars are most likely to hit you when they are turning, and they see you even less when you are riding off of the sidewalk into a cross street. It's usually safer to ride on the shoulder. Keep an eye out for bike lanes to ride in when you're driving around.

yay bikes!
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 03:14 am (UTC)
but shoulders are scary! I will endeavor to try them, though.

I definitely need a headlight thingy.
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[User Picture]From: ripresa
2007-04-17 04:04 am (UTC)
try 2 on the left..
and either a 2 or a 3 on the right.
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 05:45 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I started on 2. It worked alright for a while. The guy at the bike shop said he usually leaves it on 2, because it gives you the greatest range.
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[User Picture]From: fattony
2007-04-17 07:28 am (UTC)
when are you not being chased by royalty.
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 05:45 pm (UTC)
They can't get enough of my crude, commoner ways.
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[User Picture]From: nconstruct
2007-04-17 12:02 pm (UTC)
Bike riding is hard, but its surprising how quickly one adapts to it!
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 05:46 pm (UTC)
Yeah, it reminds me of when I first started driving. Everything seemed so hard and foreign, but then it just becomes 2nd nature.
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From: shannonlucas
2007-04-17 01:37 pm (UTC)
When I was working at UT, I would bike up and down S. 5th every day. There's a hill at the south end that's a whole lot of fun. :-p

The neighborhoods east of S. Lamar have some good hills. But oh how the legs scream for mercy on some of them.

I've actually found most drivers on the south side to be courteous to cyclists. I'd be more worried up north and on 360 -- some places it's just better to ride in packs.
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 05:46 pm (UTC)
I'm just trying to get used to biking at all right now. I think it'll be a while before I start looking for 'fun' hills.
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From: shannonlucas
2007-04-17 06:22 pm (UTC)
Is this your first bicycle ever? You could take your bike down to the Veloway. It's only bicycles and pedestrians, and it's pretty tame.

After you get more comfortable, you could look into the training rides for the big rides like the Hill Country Ride for Aids. Even if you aren't interested in the official ride itself, the training rides are a good, and they're with a big group.
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[User Picture]From: zinereem
2007-04-17 06:27 pm (UTC)
It's my first bike since I was like 13, anyhow. I know how to ride a bike, but that's about it.
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From: shannonlucas
2007-04-17 06:54 pm (UTC)
I've been in that situation. It's better to start on fairly level terrain you're familiar with (or that's predictable) with low traffic.

I live in your neighborhood, so if you want someone to ride with, let me know.
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